PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2009, Vol. 28 ›› Issue (6): 952-961.doi: 10.11820/dlkxjz.2009.06.017

• Original Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

A Literature Review on FDI Location

LIU Zuoli1, HE Canfei1|2   

  1. 1. College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China;
    2. |Peking University-Lincoln Institute Center for Urban Development and Land Policy, Beijing 100871, China
  • Online:2009-11-25 Published:2009-11-25


Although there is still no general foreign direct investment (FDI) location theory, a large number of related studies do help deepen our understanding of this issue. Location theory and FDI theory are the two fundamental theoretical bases of FDI location research. China as a successful transition country, the issue about its FDI location choice had become a hot topic in many fields. This paper reviewed the features, methods, and contents of existing studies on FDI location in China. Qualitative description was the most important character of early studies. Since the mid-1990s, the research focuses were shifted to identify the factors which affected the FDI location decision using the econometric model. Existing studies mainly focused on provincial scale and identified location factors included costs, markets, agglomeration, institution, etc. FDI location decision in host country is the interacted result of region-industry-enterprise factors, therefore there are other factors——including the country of origin, industry and enterprise characteristics, and the evolution factors——work besides the host country’s location factors.  Finally, the paper put forward some questions deserving further research, including discussing the general location model in merging economies, strengthening region-industry-enterprise systematic research, and paying attention to the location of different functions of FDI in China.

Key words: agglomeration, China, classic factors, FDI location, institution